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Duration:03:58
Uploaded:2011-01-05
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In which Hank talks about the peculiar history of "Louie Louie" and then plays his half-jamaican, half-punk cover of it.
On April 6th of 1963 a rock group called The Kingsmen walked into a Seattle recording studio and paid $36 for the privilege of an hour of recording time during which they recorded one of the worst covers of all time as far as I can tell. This song was written as a Jamaican ballad and The Kingsmen turned it into something different. And despite the fact that there had been other covers of that song, other much better covers of that song, and despite the fact that the FBI investigated the song for a year and a half and concluded that they could not in fact fault the song for anything because they could not understand the lyrics and despite the fact that The Kingsmen broke up and despite the fact that the song spent months in obscurity and despite the fact that it really wasn’t very good and there were several large mistakes in the song and in fact the singer came in a whole measure early at one point and then stopped singing and then started singing again, it became a national sensation and you know the lyrics to that song to this day, except you don’t because you can’t understand the words to the song because no-one can. The only reason I can play is because the lyrics are online and I’m going to once and for all settle it so that you will understand what The Kingsmen are saying when they sing Louie Louie.

‘Louie Louie, oh no
We gotta go
Ya-yi-yi-yi, I said
Louie Louie, oh baby
We gotta go

Fine little girl she waits for me
Me catch a ship across the sea and
Me sail that ship all alone
Me never know how I make it home

I said
Louie Louie, oh baby
We gotta go
Ya-yi-yi-yi, I said
Louie Louie, oh no
We gotta go

Night and day we sail the sea
Me think of that girl, constantly
On that ship, I dream that she's there
I smell the rose in her hair.

I said
Louie Louie, oh baby
We gotta go
Ya-yi-yi-yi, I said
Louie Louie, oh, oh no
We gotta go

Me see Jamaica, the moon above
It won't be long, till I see my love
To take her in my arms again
I tell her I'll never leave her again

I said
Louie Louie, oh baby
We gotta go
Ya-yi-yi-yi, I said
Louie Louie, oh no
We gotta go

Louie Louie,
Louie Louie,
Louie Louie,
Louie Louie’

And that’s the song.

‘Me sail that ship constantly’

You can tell it’s a freaking Jamaican ballad if you just sing it. It’s like what!? It’s what!? How did The Kingsmen turn that song into that song? Oh my god. And it’s such a… I hear it, it’s on the radio all the time and straight up it’s, it’s, it’s the most haphazard radio hit of all time and I can’t deny that it is fantastic. It’s a great song and it’s a great cover somehow, somehow it’s a great cover. I enjoy it very much, I hope you enjoyed my insight into that very peculiar song. Louie Louie covered by The Kingsmen, originally written by Richard Berry, uh, in 1955, uh, and that is now a thing that you know.